Oligodon saintgironsi DAVID, VOGEL & PAUWELS, 2008
Can you confirm these amateur observations of Oligodon saintgironsi?
|Higher Taxa||Colubridae, Colubrinae, Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes)|
|Synonym||Oligodon saintgironsi DAVID, VOGEL & PAUWELS 2008|
Oligodon saintgironsi — WALLACH et al. 2014: 502
|Distribution||S Vietnam (Dong Nai Province), Cambodia|
Type locality: “Arboretum de Trang Bôm”, now Arboretum of Bien Hoa, Dong Nai Province, southern Vietnam
|Types||Holotype: MNHN 1974.1264 (adult male). Deposited by Sergeant Poilane, no date but probably collected around 1930–40.|
Paratypes. MNHN 1877.0050 (formerly MNHN 5236) (adult male), “Cambodge”, Cambodia. Deposited by Mr. Harmand; MNHN 1974.1272 (adult female), “Institut de Recherches agronomiques, Saïgon”, now in Ho Chi Minh City. Deposited by Sergeant Poilane, no date.
|Diagnosis||Diagnosis. A species of the genus Oligodon cyclurus-group, characterized by (1) very long, deeply forked hemipenes, reaching to at least 28th SC, thin, smooth and not spinose throughout; (2) a long and thick tail in males with a ratio Tal/TL > 0.19; (3) 19–17(18)–15 dorsal scale rows; (4) reductions between 19 and 17 rows occurring between VEN 62 and 84 (x = 77.3); (5) 10–12 maxillary teeth, the last three strongly enlarged; (6) anal plate single; (7) full complement of head scales, including a presubocular in all specimens; (8) 8 supralabials; (9) 2 anterior temporals; and (10) blotched dorsal pattern, with large blotches.|
Oligodon saintgironsi spec. nov. can be diagnosed by the combination of 19 dorsal scale rows on the anterior half to third of the body, 17–18 dorsal scale rows at midbody, a long and strong tail in both sexes, very long, deeply forked hemipenes, and a blotched dorsal pattern. It differs from all other species of the Oligodon cyclurus-group by the combination of (1) the length of hemipenes, (2) the relative length of the tail, and (3) in having only 17 or 18 scale rows at midbody vs. 19, 21, and 23 rows in all others. Oligodon saintgironsi spec. nov. differs from O. chinensis which has also 17 MSR by (1) much longer hemipenes (28–29 SC vs. 12–13 SC in O. chinensis), and the dorsal scale row formula, 19–17(18)–15 in O. saintgironsi vs. 17–17–15 in O. chinensis. Additional comparisons with other species of the Oligodon cyclurus-group and of the genus Oligodon appear below in the Discussion.
The specimens do not seem to have been mentioned previously under any name in the literature, although specimens of Oligodon cyclurus with “rarely 17 rows” cited in Campden-Main (1970: 40) may refer to O. saintgironsi spec. nov. Wagner (1975) had not examined these specimens.
|Etymology||This species is named in honour of Dr. Hubert Saint Girons (1926–2000), noted French histologist and herpetologist, formerly in the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, in the Paris University and in the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle. This name is a genitive based on the author’s last name. Although a specialist of European vipers, H. Saint Girons conducted research in Cambodia (a. o., Saint Girons, 1972) and was the first recent author to recognize the validity of Oligodon ocellatus (Morice, 1875) for Indochinese populations with 19 dorsal scale rows, and the synonymy of O. analepticos with this taxon.|